Plan to split California into three states makes it onto November ballot

A plan to split up California into three separate states has gathered enough signatures to qualify for the November ballot, California Secretary of State Alex Padilla’s office confirmed this week.

The initiative received around 600,000 signatures — almost double the amount needed to qualify for the November 6th ballot.

“Three Californias” is backed by Silicon Valley billionaire Tim Draper and would divide the Golden State up into California, Northern California, and Southern California.

“Californians deserve a more effective education system that isn’t failing our families, more reliable infrastructure that isn’t fracturing our communities, and more sensible taxes that aren’t stifling our opportunities,” the Cal 3 campaign site reads.

Northern California would go from the San Jose area and extend to the Oregon border. Southern California would start in Fresno and cover most of Southern California, including the Inland empire and San Diego, and California would include Los Angeles County and extend up the coast to Monterey County.

“No one can argue that California’s government is doing a good job governing or educating or building infrastructure for its people,” Draper told The New York Times last year. “And it doesn’t matter which party is in place.”

While the group faces heavy hurdles in actually swaying voters, as a recent SurveyUSA poll shows voters are overwhelmingly opposed to the move, if it passed, the change could have a sizable effect on the national election map, and perhaps be a boost to the GOP in the electoral college.

For example the potential “Southern California” includes Fresno, Tulare, Madera and Kern counties, all of which voted for President Trump in 2016. Additionally, the historically conservative Orange County is in that theoretical state.

But it would also likely result in four more Democratic senators from California and Northern California.

Even if voters were persuaded to backing it, the intuitive would still need the approval of the California Legislature and the U.S. Congress.

The plan still comes with numerous question marks — like the transactional costs of actually breaking up the state with respect to how university systems, public works projects, and other governmental services would be divided and structured during a transition into three separate states.

“California government can do a better job addressing the real issues facing the state, but this measure is a massive distraction that will cause political chaos and greater inequality,” tweeted Steve Maviglio, a consultant for the opposition effort NoCABreakup. “Splitting California into three new states will triple the amount of special interests, lobbyists, politicians and bureaucracy.”

But supporters cite those same issues as reasons for breaking up the state in the first place, arguing that California has become too big to succeed.

“The California state government isn’t too big to fail, because it is already failing its citizens in so many crucial ways,” Peggy Grande, a spokesperson for Citizens for Cal 3 campaign, said in a statement. “The reality is that for an overmatched, overstretched, and overwrought state-government structure, it is too big to succeed. Californians deserve a better future.”


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  1. RT
    RT 14 June, 2018, 15:40

    While as a resident of “Northern California” I do understand being fed up with California’s current government. Both Democrats and Republicans are horrible bureaucrats and the other parties either have little or no support and/or are simply too out there.
    It is ironic that those in larger areas such as LA will be the ones that will truly be making this decision as this points out how the current system leaves so many areas of the state with zero real power.
    No matter if it passes or not, it will not happen as it will be tied up with various lawsuits.
    One good thing is that pass or fail, this will highlight so much of what is wrong with California.

    Reply this comment
  2. Jlstormseeker
    Jlstormseeker 14 June, 2018, 18:21

    This is obviously drafted by someone from Southern CA who does not understand that the Bay Area (i.e., San Fran) is NOT northern CA. I live 5 hours north of the Bay area and will vote against this because I will not be subject to Bay Area idiocy. The whole Bay Area from Sonoma County South should have been lumped into the Coastal CA . then Northern California might support this.

    Reply this comment
    • Chelsea Clintonista
      Chelsea Clintonista 15 June, 2018, 08:40

      ….and the name Nor-Cal is no good.
      The 51st state of the union needs a name
      more like;
      New Habitat Respect Behavior Zone

      Reply this comment
    • Hcat
      Hcat 15 June, 2018, 09:15

      You’re right. With the Bay Area in Ca Proper, this thing would work. Without, it doesn’t.

      Reply this comment
    • ricky65
      ricky65 16 June, 2018, 07:55

      Agree. Any of us Norks living outside the Bay area and surrounding counties will never vote for this prop. A slight adjustment to add SF and environs to Coastal Cal and it would work. One blue state, One red (the real Norcal) and one sorta purple(Socal) and this might work.
      Like the idea- not the boundaries

      Reply this comment
    • Marin Native
      Marin Native 8 July, 2018, 19:03

      Fun times in Marvelous Marin, great weather. We also have a ranch in Shasta County, 30 miles from Redding – future capital of the State of Jefferson 51 movement. Made the donation(s) purchased the hat, like the hat.

      Reply this comment
  3. Prophetfortheblind
    Prophetfortheblind 14 June, 2018, 20:37

    Please include SF, Marin, and Napa counties to California. Norcal would be better served without them.

    Reply this comment
    • Hcat
      Hcat 15 June, 2018, 09:12

      Agreed. There’s no point in this plan unless the Bay Area is added to “California.” The “Jefferson” Counties want to be rid of the Bay Area more than anything.

      Reply this comment
  4. DirtDgr
    DirtDgr 15 June, 2018, 06:46

    We are asking the very same government that is failing to somehow correctly and fairly do this. No way. They will fail at this too and we will be worse off than we are now. They are not capable of a task as big as this.

    Reply this comment
  5. Ted Steele
    Ted Steele 15 June, 2018, 15:33

    This is a great idea— it’s Republiworthy. Next, after this split, we can split each of the substates into further substates.

    Reply this comment
  6. Dork
    Dork 16 June, 2018, 07:17

    This whole idea is Stupid, they should have put a Ballot Measure renouncing Statehood and have California revert back to a Territory. Then President Trump could appoint a General or Admiral to take over and clean up this cesspool.

    Reply this comment
    • Queeg
      Queeg 16 June, 2018, 14:57

      Comrade Dork

      Hairy arm doomers will continue to leave. West Virgina to tempting where all airports only dispense Mountain Dew and Wild Turkey!

      Reply this comment
  7. Mr. Pickle
    Mr. Pickle 18 June, 2018, 14:42

    Perhaps 3 smaller states would allow voters to be more engaged overall. Easier to manage, and hell, a new DMV! The way it is now is a proven unworkable massive problem. I am sending my vote as a YES to send a message even though it will never get out of our legislature. Too many Dems love it the way it is. They can SPEND other peoples money and NEVER suffer any push back. For most of our legislators, it is the MOST money they have ever made………. So vote accordingly. Part of the fix as I see it, is to do what other states have done, and that is SPLIT the electoral vote BY votes and not winner take all……. That is the fair thing to do, but who said Dems are fair?

    Reply this comment
  8. Spurwing Plover
    Spurwing Plover 19 June, 2018, 07:45

    We here in the State of Jefferson(Southern Oregon and Northern California dont want anything to do with Moonbeam and his idiotic policies

    Reply this comment
    • Ted, The Ted incarnate
      Ted, The Ted incarnate 19 June, 2018, 08:38

      Get used to it Beachbird— as Bob Dylan wrote lo these many years ago…”You aint goin nowhere”…..lmao

      Conservatives used to stand for
      less Gov
      fiscal restraint
      Against Russia and dictators

      lmao— all gone now little buddies

      Reply this comment
  9. Queeg
    Queeg 19 June, 2018, 19:18


    doomers are good moving customers….Uly on vacation in Greenland rock hunting with some of those crustee reality show hicks…I’m finally in charge and have awesome moving specials….like a neat picture of Baby and Vicious working the lot about daylight!

    Reply this comment
  10. Hawkeyeted
    Hawkeyeted 24 June, 2018, 12:18

    Anyone else notice that each proposed new “state” contains at least one ultra-liberal metro area?

    Put them all in “California” and let the rest of use sane Californians live in peace.

    Reply this comment
  11. Matthew Young
    Matthew Young 24 June, 2018, 14:06

    Anything but the status quo. This is good enough.

    Reply this comment
  12. EasrBayLarry
    EasrBayLarry 5 July, 2018, 17:57

    What I see is 6 Dem senators in DC.
    Examine the voters roles in each section.

    Reply this comment

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